tv Key Capitol Hill Hearings CSPAN November 7, 2014 6:00am-7:01am EST
the time of the young house member coming to one of his older colleagues and pointing to a member from the other party and saying, there's the enemy. and the answer was, they're not and the answer was, they're not the enemy. they're the adversaries. the senate is the enemy. the house and senate have very different cultures, very different rhythms, very different rules. and when newt gingrich and bob dole took the reins of power in 1994 and had very much the notion they were going to work together in sync and force bill clinton to his knees, within three months, it was gingrich saying privately and then publicly that he had far more trouble with bob dole than he did with clinton and called dole the tax collector of the welfare state, which improved relations, s you can imagine. we're not going to see the same
name calling between boehner and mcconnell, but it's not going to be that much easier for things to move smoothly through the house and then through the senate, including many of those bills that passed the house the last time. one comment -- we haven't talked much about presidential consequences. this election was very good for hillary clinton, if she decides to run, not only because it puts a crimp in the potential campaign of my former student, martin o'malley, who isn't going to be helped by the fact that it was his administration and lieutenant governor who were repudiated in a big way in that state, but i think democrats now are shocked enough that winning the presidency in 2016 takes a higher priority in this unprecedented effort to unite ehind a candidate. we also see a significant boost for scott walker, for john kasich, who now becomes at least
a factor on the national stage. and keep your eye, not as a presidential prospect but as a serious potential running mate, brian sandoval, who won handily in nevada and is probably a more attractive in many ways hispanic american candidate, i think, than susanna martinez, who will be governor but who has a few issues, including some of these tapes that have been released of her comments. so a lot of interesting dynamics out there. now, in terms of looking ahead, kevin mccarthy said before the election, anticipating the republican majority in the senate, we've got to show we're not the party of no. we want to come back in the lame duck session, take the budget issues off the table. we're going to pass a long-term continuing resolution. and at the same time, before the election, we had mcconnell
telling politico, as he had told many of his funders at one of the koch brothers enclaves, we're going to use the budget process and especially reconciliation and appropriations bills where we can, in effect, to bring obama to his knees. he repeated this in more gentle terms yesterday at the press conference. we're going to use the appropriations and budget process and especially reconciliation, where you only need 51 votes to pare back on obamacare, to cut back on the consumer protection bureau, to bring back coal and do a number of other things. those don't go together very well. you've got mccarthy against mcconnell. and mcconnell, who said no shutdowns. mcconnell against mcconnell. you can only imagine that if a budget reconciliation bill gets passed through on a partisan basis, that does more than flesh wounds to obamacare, that
basically defunds the consumer financial protection bureau and maybe does other damage to the sec and dodd frank and that blocks the epa from issuing regulations on climate change, barack obama will veto it. now, they may pass something else and send it to him. but if he keeps vetoing it, what do you get? a shutdown. so we're not past that particular hump, even if the leaders know intellectually that it would be a catastrophic thing to do. there's another factor here that is important on the money front as well. we will see, i think, a continuing resolution that will
probably take the current year's funding through to the end of the year, in december. that will be controversial. but with the numbers that are there now, they'll get it through, and the argument will be this is not the time to pick a fight. but remember that starting october 1, that two-year budget deal that deferred sequesters ends. and the sequesters come back. you're going to have congressional republicans determined to negate it on defense. but some are going to be saying, well, we can't add the budget deficits now. so let's just take an additional amount out of discretionary domestic spending. and that's not going to fly. and it's not at all clear that it's going to fly even to deferred defense, with a base that said we came here to cut government, not to keep it going. so as we move towards a budget, which now will be a budget that's more than a talking point, that will have to be in sync with the house and senate, which is not going to be an easy thing to do. then as you move towards individual appropriations bills and you're talking about across-the-board cuts on top of what we've had before, that means more cuts in emergency preparedness, the cdc, n.i.h. funding and medical research, the faa and air traffic control,
not to mention the cuts in basic research and cuts in defense as we ramp up against isis and with other crises around the world. this is not going to be an easy time to govern or to pass bills, even with just republican votes. and those bills will very likely be vetoed or, in many instances, filibustered in the senate. the filibuster will be turned around and used in a different fashion. a couple other observations, at least one on foreign policy. we have all seen this extraordinarily embarrassingly public pissing match between the obama administration and the netanyahu administration. some of it reflects a belief on the part of netanyahu that he can rely on congress, which will give him unquestioned backing. and that's true in both parties.
but it's especially true with republicans. and remember, netanyahu was almost public with his support for mitt romney in 2012, which has added to some of the problems here. this new republican majority in the senate and the more robust majority in the house is likely to lead the israeli government to be even more dismissive of the obama administration. and i suspect we're going to see more tensions there and more friction before we're done, as we know we're going to see frictions ahead, including with the use of the budget process as the administration moves forward with negotiations with iran, possibly towards a deal. and we'll see all kinds of efforts to try and put a crimp in that. we will probably see a newly empowered republican senate move with the house to provide more sophisticated weapons or push to do so to the ukrainian government in kiev. and we're going to see, i think, more frictions there. and at the same time, john kerry
is going to be hauled in to testify in both houses, in multiple committees, on benghazi and on all of these foreign policy questions, at a time when his challenges will be dramatically greater. one of my reasons, in my column, it's about the geopolitical implications of plummeting oil rices. if oil prices stabilize, you're going to see fracking drop off pretty dramatically, because the cost and benefits don't match. you're also going to see some of the drilling decline. that, by the way, will have economic implications for places like north dakota and louisiana, very good implications for california, among other things. it may change some of the political dynamics that we're dealing with as well. just two other points.
we are going to see enormous frictions between the senate and the president on confirmations. one of the questions is whether, in this lame duck session, harry reid recognizing that judicial confirmation also dry up. there will be some district court nominees that have already been basically approved by republican senators that may go through, but mostly nothing will happen. and most of the executive nominations will die as well. if you're worried about obama using his executive authority, one of the ways in which you can hinder that and hamper it is to keep people from moving into vacancies in those executive positions where they can act. and we are going to see a lot of investigations. one of the most interesting people to watch will be ron johnson of wisconsin, who will take over the subcommittee on investigations. he has said multiple times, i'm gonna go back to the old style of doing it in a bipartisan way, doing real oversight instead of investigations. that will probably last a couple of weeks, maybe a month. but the pressure on him to do all of these gotcha
investigations will be very, very great. we will see some things done. we will see trade agreements. that's a slam dunk for republicans. it's below the radar for tea party activists. they don't much care if you get that done. business likes it. democrats are divided. you'll anger labor, heading towards 2016. why not? here will be interesting possibilities for prison and sentencing reform. and for nsa reform where you'll see very unusual coalitions. rand paul and mike lee joining with widen and franken, for example. but john mccain and lindsey graham and others, we'll see tensions there on both of those issues. there is a chance for a corporate tax reform.
but we have to keep in mind, businesses ideas is dramatically cut the marginal rates and leave all the preferences alone. and any reform that is not revenue neutral is simply not going to happen. whether you can work some deal out will be interesting to watch. i do think there's a real possibility of infrastructure reform. john delaney has a bipartisan bill in the house, actually pretty strongly bipartisan, to create an infrastructure bank funded through 50-year bonds that now basically are almost cost-free. and they have repatriated profits from companies used with an incentive to buy a portion of those. so you don't have a lot of additional government funding irectly. and that could happen. but, again, you're going to see substantial tea party opposition to anything that looks like it's expanding government. and we are going to get a crisis on the highway trust fund again because of the refusal to raise gasoline taxes or to consider any other revenue source unless
you can do something innovative like that. on the bigger issues, forget about it. we did not break the fever or move towards a new or restored era of bipartisan policy making. tribalism is greater. and with three to five republican senators, absent without leave most of the time, out there raising money and building support in the primary and caucus states with basically the appeals being far more to that, even narrower version or slice of the electorate, and you can see where we're going with that when you have a marco rubio basically denouncing his own immigration bill as we head towards that campaign. and a bobby jindal saying common core is the greatest thing ever to common core is the biggest threat to the american way of life.
that kind of tells you what direction and approach we're going to see. that's like an electoral magnet pulling mitch mcconnell's caucus away from the idea of working out deals where you give a little and you get a little. >> thank you very much, norman. thanks to the rest of the panelists. i'm sure there have been disagreements. but i'd like to turn to your questions. we have, i think, about a half hour left. if you could just wait for the microphone and ask your questions as a question. we'll take two questions from his table. the mic? >> i can speak loudly. >> well, okay. >> you have got to wait for the mic. right here. ight here. >> my question is a simple one for the panel. no one has spoken to what the election results mean for brand clinton. i wonder if you might speak to that. >> let's get this second
question on the table at the same time. >> thanks very much. garrett mitchell, from the mitchell report. norm, i was looking for my black armband, which i didn't think i was going to have to wear, but i'm going to put it back on now, thinking about the prospects for the next two years. your characterization of the mind-set of the republican majorities, particularly in the house but in both chambers, suggests that there will be a preference for sticking it to the president and saying, you know, we had this wave because we stuck to our principles, so the prospect of there being some ooperation between the white
house and the congress is not good. on the other hand, it seems to me that one of the ways to characterize this election is that the republicans had better candidates and that one of the reasons that the republicans had better candidates is because whatever the term "mainstream republicans" paid greater ttention to getting a higher equality of candidate than they've had in prior years, which would lead you to believe that there will be pressure in the republican party at large not to be the party of "no" but o be the party that wants to get some stuff done so that when you get to 2016, the republicans an run on some sort of
message. and i just wonder if you can speak to that. >> team hillary and the next two years. >> yes. norm said the election will be good for hillary clinton. i think in some respects that's right. the martin o'malley candidacy seems to be over. the warner candidacy was over some time ago and is not going to happen now. i think she's got problems as a candidate. the energy on the party increasingly is on the left. you have the party's wingers get discontented in a second term of a presidency. that happened with the george w. bush administration. it's happening now. and it's hard to picture hillary as the new face. i mean, the clintons' theme song is "don't stop thinking about tomorrow. that was released in 1977. [laughter] that's 39 years before the 2016 election. another area where i would disagree with norm somewhat is i
think that after the government shutdown, the mood changed among house republicans. you had fewer house republican members saying we've got to go to confrontation, we've got to defund obamacare and so forth. that lost appeal because they could read the polls, and it threatened disaster for the republican party. and republican primary voters, as gary suggested, i think have tended not to opt for the candidate who is the one that is loudest when he stands up on the chair and yells "hell no. that may have an effect. it will be interesting to see if that plays out in the 2016 election. you can imagine people reaching for the wings, as norm suggested. you can also imagine people campaigning the way i would argue cory gardner did and some of the other republican candidates. the republican candidates being newer to the scene, you know, starting off unknown with the
problems, you also have an option of framing their candidacy in future oriented terms to an extent which is going to be difficult for a hillary clinton, who was involved in her first election in 1970 and became a national figure in 1991 and is now, you know, sort of on the moderate wing of a party, arguably, which is moving left, which poses more problems for her. and that shows -- those are problems for her. there's challenges for republicans. it's not clear that any of the republican presidential candidates will be able to do that. >> norm, a quick response. then we're going to take two questions over here. if somebody could bring the mic right up here. >> first, gary, let me say, there were candidates who did not make a big splash this time, like todd akin did. but when you have a joni ernst, who basically has bought into the agenda 21 conspiracy theory and said that the united nations was plotting to take away private property and cars from iowans so they couldn't live in their houses and travel says she
packs her gun and if government challenges her right, she'll use it. and there are a whole string of other things. when you have a tom cotton who said that mexican drug lords are conspiring with terrorists to bring them over the border to kill people in arkansas, that doesn't suggest to me that you have candidates right smack in the center of the process. cory gardner, who is an establishment republican in a lot of ways, was also one of the 20 most conservative republicans in terms of votes in the house. that's not a moderate group to begin with. so you've got that factor. there is no doubt that you have an establishment that doesn't want to appear as the party of no. there are two ways to avoid that. one way is to say we're going to compromise and give a little bit. the other way is to try and frame it so that he's the party of no, and the obstructionist. and i think you're going to see more of a push on the latter front.
just one other point. mitch mcconnell said, election eve, you know, we're not going to repeal obamacare. it takes 60 votes in the senate. there was enormous pushback from the base. what did mitch mcconnell say the next day? of course we're going to do everything we can to repeal obamacare. so what you want to do, and that includes shutting down the government, even if you don't want to, if you end up with a confrontation where you're using the budget as leverage and you have enormous demands to use it to force the president to his knees, and he says, no, you have a couple of choices. you dilute your product and take the flak from your base, or -- and ted cruz will be right out there, pounding you if you give a millimeter, much less an inch -- or you stick to your guns and hat results is a shutdown. so like it or not, there's some things where the dynamics may pull you away from what prag
matically would be sensible positions. >> two questions here. then we're going to turn to that table. >> thank you. it's my personal opinion hat. >> who are you? >> sorry. i'm berk rosen. i'm really addressing what you said, norm, and that was not much is going to happen in the sense of compromise. and it seems to me that what structurally needs to be done is the leadership needs to divest the power down into the committees, which has been the problem now for the last 20 years. and that would be the seeds of bipartisanship, because when committees start marking up bills, by nature, by definition, there are amendments and compromises and there's a much better chance of coming up with solutions that, by the time they get to the floor, are
bipartisan. so as i say, it's my view that the real solution to this is to just simply turn to your committee chairman and say, get to work. give us an energy policy. ive us a tax policy. give us a health policy. and instead of the top-down. now, is that -- would you agree ith that, as the first part of the question, and the second is, can you see that happening? >> let's put this other question. >> the question is directed towards michael. largely around self-described independence. i was struck on the first wave of the exits that showed the party id question was 34% republican, 37% democrat, 29% independent. and all those correlated into the ballot test trends early on. nd my question, michael, is, have you seen a tick or swing where independents contributed
to a wave in second midterms and how long did that carry over in the corresponding presidential year? >> committee structure and independence. >> burt, i certainly agree that we should have policy making start at the committee and subcommittee level and take it to the floor. in the senate, despite the polarization, you've got a lot of problem solvers. that is irrespective of ideology. jeff blake, corker, lamar alexander, lots of them. you are going to get republics coming out of senate committees that are going to get bipartisan support on the floor. most of them will go nowhere in the house, and that's a good part of the problem, because you're not going to see bipartisan policy making emerge in the house. it's not in the current dna of the house. it wasn't there when democrats were in the majority. it's there even less now. that's a good part of the problem. if it were the senate alone, you'd have possibilities here, again, with issues that are a little bit below the radar of the big, tough national
issues. but there's a big problem getting them to the president for signature or veto. >> john and michael? >> look, i'll fundamentally agree with norm, when we have divided government, it's still going to be hard, at the end of the day, to get a lot of these things through. but there is a constituency out there, and to some extent in the house, for a broadly speaking regular order. that is because, and if you look at democrats and harry reid and trying to keep a lid on there being controversial votes, it didn't really do democrats a lot of good. a lot of the democrats who are in tough seats, who didn't have to take votes, were then getting tagged on the campaign trail as having 99% voting records with the president. so it may not solve everything. i think, at the end of the day, you've got to get something through both chambers and the agreement of the president. but i think there will be a lot of good will, both on the majority and minority side. something that mcconnell has emphasized, also an emphasis on a freer amendment process, at least to an extent, where his side as well as democrats will have a little bit more chance to lay on the amendment side.
>> michael? >> i think norm is right, in that the senate has got people, and i would name some democrats as well as republicans, inclined towards bipartisanship. they have been kept in -- we call it joni ernst's position by senate majority leader harry reid over the last four years, basically prohibited from engaging in that. you've got people like current finance chairman, future ranking member ron widen, for example, who really hasn't been allowed to bring things. you've got trial lawyers who tell harry reid to not put it on the floor and it doesn't come on the floor. one person we haven't mentioned is the president, who we could see in his press conference yesterday, continues to have an apparent disinclination as well as a demonstrated inability to do bipartisan reforms.
that is a problem. but i think there is some possibilities there. the senate is where it -- the place where it can happen more easily than the house, as norm quite correctly identifies it. but we've had histories under president bush, under clinton, under presidents bush and reagan, where, you know, the senate kind of does the compromising side. the house massages its own view. and they do get things through. that can happen. it helps to have a president who assists rather than retards the process. chris's question, my understanding -- correct me if i'm wrong -- a three-point advantage for democrats and party id on the exit poll, that eems -- is that wrong? >> it was 36-36, democrat-republican. and independent was 38.
>> and then it came out, what, six points democratic in the presidential election which i think was partly a result of change of man, partly as a result of turnout of democratic roups. ndependents, a lot of people say they're independents. they don't vote like independents. they vote all republican, all democrats. we've got the fewest number of split congressional districts ince 1920. a lot of people who are independents are, or at least were during the last two or four years, disgruntled republicans. it's one of the reasons why we often, although not quite in the recent polls, where congressionallal republicans are rated lower than congressional democrats. when you look at the innards of those polls, what you find out are a lot of people identified as republicans give negative ratings to republicans in congress, where relatively few people who identify as democrats give negative ratings to
democrats in congress. they're both negative, but, you know, what it says, we're in a period of competition. republicans have won four -- no. democrats have won four of the last six presidential elections, popular vote. republicans have won house majorities in eight of the ten elections. that's robust competition, on a fairly even playing field with he democrats having some advantage in the electoral college, the republicans in equal population district legislatures. and the fight continues. >> the number of pure independents in the university of michigan's long trend line, starting in the 1950's, is about 0% to 12%.
kay. we have two questions at that table. then we're going to go over to that side of the room. >> barbara whitman. i'd like to elicit commentary on the virginia race. ed gillespie believed in himself so much that it was infectious. i was at his house on saturday morning, having coffee with him and his wife before we went out to vote early. and it was so infectious that i almost came to believe him. and at any rate, what i'd like to know is whether you all think that the fact that he couldn't convince people of that infectious spirit sooner, so that, for instance, as a fund-raiser for him, i had a heck of a time getting people to give money because they said that was a hopeless race, or whether there's any validity to the idea that having a 2.5% draw for a libertarian meant we ouldn't make it. >> the question from the gentleman next to you. if you could say your questions quickly, then we'll try to move around the room. >> adam powell from the university of southern california. michael barone, you said that
millennials are mildly more than average democratic in this election. have you seen any survey data of millennial voters about hillary clinton specifically addressing the question of the fact that she'll be significantly perhaps a generation older than the republican candidate? >> anyone? >> i haven't seen that, but your question prompts me to go look for it this afternoon. [laughter] i think that's a good question. i think it's something, if you're running her campaign, you would be concerned about. you know, is she -- you know, she's -- you get the mood of ed gillespie much more upbeat, much more sunny, optimistic. the democrats, i think, remind me of murray's phrase in the 1965 in the new york mayor race, about john lindsey, he is fresh and everyone else is tired. i think that's a danger for the
democratic party, possibly an opportunity for the republican party. on ed gillespie, mark warner was 65% of the vote 8 years ago. that was not a close election. and he went down to 49% in his one-point reelection victory. you know, ed gillespie was already a serious player in political vineyards. he showed very well. warner got what he polled. actually, the polls were dead-accurate on what mark warner got. all i can say is, you know, he must have -- it must have been a heck of an election night for him, when you come down 16%. says something about the obama democratic party, doesn't it? >> yeah, it does. it also says something about the obama democratic party in virginia, where somebody who didn't think he had a terribly close race probably would have done things differently if ed gillespie had gotten a couple million three weeks out. i can imagine that mark warner would have run a different race three weeks out.
it shows the stability of the obama coalition in virginia, that it's now held up over a governor's race, a senate race, two presidential races. virginia is not a red state anymore, not even a light red state anymore. could gillespie have won? perhaps. certainly with additional resources. but then again, if i were a national party strategist, and i had to decide whether to expend money three weeks out, and the expense of the washington market, and i saw mark warner polling at 49-51, i probably wouldn't have put $2 million nto the campaign either. much better to put those $2 million into the races that you know you have a shot at that are probably much less expensive per vote possibly gained. >> okay. this table over here, we have three questions. over here. let's put them all on the table. anybody can answer. if you could ask your question
quickly, because we don't have much more time. >> in a low turnout election, almost anything can happen. my question is, on the impact of early voting, what do you see as the impact of early voting on the get out the vote effort? the republican effort was said to be exceptional. the democratic effort may have faltered a bit. >> and the gentleman next to him. >> yeah. the republicans will defend a lot more senate seats in 2016. the democrats. how might that affect mitch mcconnell's agenda? >> and then your question right here. >> oh. sorry. linda kilian. i wanted to say, if you looked at the virginia exit polls, mark warner's favorability was 56%. gillespie's was 49%. it was all about obama, in virginia. the second thing i'd really like
to challenge your assertion on independent voters. i really think it's closer to 20%. and there's a lot of reasons we can't go into here, but look at colorado. look at the difference in the governor and senate race in olorado. pick six, ten, twelve races this year. those were swing voters. >> okay. who wants to take one question? henry? >> talking about the low turnout, i dispute this was a low turnout election, that when you take a look at the states where there were actually competitive races as opposed to states like mississippi or alabama where there were no competitive races, turnout was running between 70% and 75% of the 2012 level. the turnout differences between democratic urban areas and republican rural areas were not significant. in states where both parties were committing lots of resources, you saw voters turnout at rates that were pretty high for a midterm election and you saw partisans on both sides turn out.
democrats did not lose colorado because democrats didn't show up. the turnout national figures bscure a couple of things. one is that minorities tend to be concentrated in states that do not have serious races. hispanics tend to be concentrated in california and texas and nevada and new mexico, none of which had serious competitive races. african-americans are concentrated in a lot of southern states that did not have serious races. second, millennials tend to be more nonwhite. so the two things coincide. that young hispanics are in areas where they're not motivated to turn out, and that depresses the so-called millennial votes. it wasn't a low turnout race. democrats did much better in states where they could have won than the national would suggest. it was up to the message, which didn't persuade, whether it's 10%, 15%, 20%, the people in the middle at this particular time.
>> let me just address the senators who are up. there are 24 republicans up to 10 democrats the next time. it's really a reverse phenomenon. almost all the democrats who won n 2010 won with a very stiff wind in their faces. and republicans had wind at their backs. many of them in states that obama carried, blue states. but there's a dilemma for them, because they have to worry about primary challenges. if they move too far, too early, to accommodate the broader dynamics in their states, they ould face a problem. but they do have a problem with some of these votes. and where the new majority leader mcconnell has said he's going to return to the regular order and have a more open amendment process, i'm just waiting for the first bill that comes up. maybe it's the keystone pipeline or maybe it's a repeal of the medical device tax, in an open amendment process with democrats step in with 20 gotcha mendments, i think we're going
to be seeing the amendment tree filled, not perhaps all the time, but a lot of the time to protect those vulnerable senators who are up the next term. >> john, get out the vote. >> a couple things on early voting. i think there's been a little bit of a misunderstanding of what early voting does in terms of turnout. early voting by itself, most research shows, does not increase turnout. it's certainly been used significantly by parties to encourage their voters to start voting earlier, but then, you know, on election day, you might not have those voters there. i think this cycle you saw republicans using effectively in places, i think the opposition to in-person early voting by some republicans -- i mean, i'm not for an extremely long period, but i think a reasonable period of seven to ten days in early voting is something republicans should not fear. on the -- look, i think norm's point is well-taken that epublicans have more ground to
defend, but one obvious point is republicans are going to have 54 votes in the senate. 245er going to -- they're going to need to retain the majority. while many of those seats are in states that president obama won, very few of them are in wildly democratic states. they're in the states like ohio and wisconsin and places where certainly some of those republicans will feel pressure, but it's not as much of a slam dunk as those six very red states that democrats faced in this election. >> michael, quickly. >> i'd underline what john just said. i took a look at the seats that are up this time. and you've got, you know, in target states, states that were carried by obama, you've got seven republican senators up. only one of those states that
obama -- using the obama percentage of 2012 as an index get more than 53% of the vote. that's illinois where he got 58%, where mark kirk is up. the upscale voters did throw out the democrat brad schneider and elect the republican bob dole, 2013. i don't think kirk is a sure loser, though he's an obvious target. six of those seven states have republican governors, which shows that republicans are capable of winning statewide. the obama percentage ranged from 8 to 53. this is not quite as juicy a target for democrats as the current -- as this year's lineup was for republicans. and you've got harry reid. now, reid has shown in 2010, and the gaming industry showed they can get the votes out and bring them out even when harry reid's job rating was terrible. they conspicuously -- democrats did not do that in 2014 in nevada. and basically they lost both
houses to the legislature for the first time in a very long ime. but the gaming industry and the culinary union are capable of ginning that up for harry reid again. and, you know, we have to keep up with our john ralston in the las vegas review journal. >> there's a question in the back. are there any questions on this ide of the room? >> anna smith from the hungarian embassy. can you explain to me the phenomenon of general dissolutionment with the political establishment across the voting base, left and right, with a relatively low voter turnout? by my counts, the highest number of uncontested races and the fact that about 90% of the house races were really not very competitive. in other words, why do you keep reelecting your own members if you're so angry and disillusioned with them? >> two points.
one it's true there are a lot of saved seats. that's more because of the way in which americans are living in democratic areas or republican areas. i do think, when it comes down to the mix of competitive seats, we have always heard this story that we're going to have the election, where we throw out the incumbents on both sides and we're disillusioned with everyone. that really never comes about. these waves come about because one side is more motivated and the incumbents that are in danger of seats on the other side are the ones that get knocked out. if it comes around the other way, it's in the other direction. but almost never do we have this mythical throw all the bums out of both parties, although we talk about i every election. >> the republicans appear to have gained house seats or be ahead in, i think, and only four of the seats are 55% or more obama districts. in straight-ticket voting, you can target things with precision
and you don't waste money on opeless races. >> you know what? michael, again, may be the limiting case here. if you've got a really anti-incumbent mood, strong enough that you've decided that you want to throw the bums out, and you've got a guy who is under a 20-count indictment for tax fraud and who is otherwise best known for threatening a reporter, to throw him off the balcony, and he wins by 13 oints, what does that tell you? it tells you that voters in staten island first said, well, e's one of our guys. and seconds, probably that there's enough cynicism and disillusionment that voters think they're all like that. ours just happen to be the one that got caught. so if that's the sort of
mind-set that people can have, these utterly conflicting views in their heads, throw all the bums out, including polls that showed us a higher proportion who were willing to throw their own out, and then they vote in a very different way, maybe that just tells us something about human nature. >> i want to thank all of you and thank my guys on the panel. i just want to say one more thing, because i'm feeling very nostalgic. we've had election watch in this room since 1982. we'll be back for the 2016 race, but we won't be here. we won't be here. we'll be in our fabulous new building on massachusetts avenue. we hope all of you will join us for 2016. thank you so much! [applause]
>> today u.s. ambassador to the u.n. samantha power will be american in washington, d.c. she's expected to talk about u.n. peacekeeping missions and the u.s. role in supporting the missions. live coverage starts at 1:00 p.m. eastern here on c-span. >> here are just a few of the comments we received from our viewers. >> just calling to tell you how uch i enjoy q&a. at 5:00 on sunday in the west coast, everything stops in my house. i turn off my phone, i get my cup of coffee and enjoy the best hour on television. >> i enjoyed listening to the guests. i enjoyed the comments that were said today. he was very accurate and he was
on point. not -- he was not using his own personal innuendo and i greatly enjoyed it and i hope you have more guests like that. but he was right on target this morning. >> i'm calling to say that i think, like many people, c-span is wonderful, but as to criticisms, i almost have none. and i'm a very partisan kind of person but the reason i almost have none is because i think you all do a tremendous job of showing just about every side of everything and the way people look at things in d.c. and elsewhere. i take my hat off to you. thank you very much. >> and continue to let us know what you think about the programs you're watching. call us at 202-626-3400. e-mail us at comments @c-span.org. or send us a tweet. join the c-span conversation, like us on facebook, follow us
on twitter. the 2015 c-span studentcam video competition is underway open to all middle and high school tonight students to create all hree themes of the government. there's 200 cash prizes for students and teachers totaling $100,000. go to studentcam.org. >> on thursday, house speaker john boehner talked about the midterm elections and the republican's plans for the next congress in tuesday's elections, republicans expanded their majority in the house of representatives winning at least 246 seats. this is 15 minutes.
>> i missed you all. you did? i hope you did not believe it. >> never do. >> good. i'm going to start by congratulating my friend, senator mitch mcconnell. as you know, mitch and i have worked very closely together over the last eight years and i don't think i could ask for a better partner or do i think the senate could have a better majority leader than mitch mcconnell. also, i express my gratitude to the people of ohio's eighth congressional district. you know, my mission is the same today as it was in 1990 when i was first elected to build a smaller, less costly, more
accountable government here in washington, d.c. and right now i believe that means continuing to listen, to make the american people's priorities our priorities and to confront the big challenges that face middle class families starting with the economy. you have heard me talk many times about the many jobs bills that the outgoing senate majority has ignored. those bills will offer the congress, i think, a new start. we can act on the keystone pipeline, restore the 40-hour workweek that was gutted by obamacare and pass the harm our -- hire more heroes act that will encourage our businesses to hire more of our veterans. again, this is just a start. i'll be going around the country outlining my own personal vision for how we can reset america's economic foundation. the energy boom that is going on in america is real. i think it provides us with a very big opportunity, but to maximize that opportunity, i
believe that we need to do five things. that is fix our broken tax code, address the debt that is hurting our economy and imprisoning the future of our kids and grandkids, reform our legal system, reshape our regulatory policy to make bureaucrats more accountable and give parents more choices in a system that isn't educating enough of america's children. now, finding common ground is going to be hard work, but it will be even harder if the president isn't willing to work with us. yesterday we heard him say that he may double down on his go it alone approach. listen, i have told the president before, he needs to put politics aside and rebuild trust. and rebuilding trust not only with the american people, but with the american people's representatives here in the united states congress. now, this is the best way to
deliver solutions, to get the economy going again and to keep the american dream alive and well. this will be the focus of our new majority. i'm eager to get to work. >> mr. speaker, as the president moves forward on immigration and acts alone on immigration, is that going to poison the well for any type of cooperation between this new republican majority and the white house? >> listen, you all heard me say starting two years yesterday that our immigration program is broken and needs to be fixed. but i have made it clear to the president if he acts unilaterally on his own outside of his authority, he will poison the well and there will be no chance for immigration reform moving in this congress. it's as simple as that. >> mr. speaker, you mentioned obama care and the 40-hour workweek, in that your "wall street journal" op-ed, you talked about obama care. how do you walk this balance without this being the predomen nant issue, or is it when freshman coming in who haven't voted for obama care or tweaking
t to go for a full repeal? >> obama care is hurting our economy. it's hurting middle class families and it's hurting the ability for employers to create more jobs. and so the house, i'm sure at some point next year will move to repeal obamacare because it should be repealed. it should be replaced with common sense reforms. hat respect the doctor-patient relationship. now whether that can pass the senate, i don't know. but i know in the house it will pass. we will pass that. but that doesn't mean that we shouldn't do other things. there are bipartisan bills that have passed the house, sitting in the senate that would in fact make changes to obama care. you know, there is a bipartisan majority in the house and senate for repealing the medical device
tax. i think there is a bipartisan unanimous majority in the house and senate for getting rid of the ipad, the independent payment advisory board, the rationing board in obamacare. how about the individual mandate, there are democrats and republicans who believe this is unfair. just because we may not be able to get everything we want doesn't mean that we shouldn't try to get what we can. >> you mentioned different issues there, votes in this congress goes back into obama care and the numbers gets into the 60 and 70's in terms of roll call against obama? >> there are bipartisan majority in the house and senate to take some of these issues out of obamacare. we need to put them on the president's desk and let him choose. >> mr. speaker, you heard the president say that he basically gave you a year waiting for you to be able to deliver on
immigration reform and that in this post-election period he is ready to act, and then he would pull back the executive orders if you could have legislation that works. could that be a catalyst for you to actually get something done? >> no, because i believe that the president continues to act on his own, he is going to poison the well. when you play with matches, you take the risk of burning yourself. and he is going to burn yourself -- himself if he continues to go down this path. the american people made it clear election day, they want to get things done and they don't want the president acting on a unilateral basis. >> mr. speaker, how do you expect the president to trust that you really want to work together when out of the gate, you say that you want to repeal his signature law that you know has no chance of getting a veto proof majority. how do you expect him to trust you? >> my job is to listen to the american people. the american people have made it clear they're not for obamacare. ask all of those democrats who lost their elections on tuesday
night. a lot of them voted for obamacare. my job is not to get along with the president just to get along with him, although we actually have a nice relationship. the fact is my job is listen to my members and listen to the american people and make their priorities our priorities. >> mr. speaker, the "wall street journal" is out with a report saying that president obama has sent a secret letter to iran's supreme leader on fighting isis, your reaction, sir? >> i don't trust the iranians. i don't think we need to bring them into this. and i would hope that the negotiations that are underway are serious negotiations. ut i have my doubts. >> if, having heard your reiterated threat, the president said suddenly, fine, i will take no executive action on immigration. could you guarantee him that he will hold votes on legislation next year? >> i have made my position very clear.
it is time for the congress of the united states to deal with a very difficult issue in our society. this immigration issue because a -- has become a political football over the last 10 years or more, it's just hard to deal -- it's just time to deal with it. >> can your party presidential nominee be forced to run if you -- >> this is not about politics. this is trying to do the right thing for the country. >> mr. speaker, isn't the idea of repealing obamacare third or fourth line in your op-ed today, isn't it in a sense poisoning the well from your angle? >> no. >> when you go to the white house -- >> no. our job is to make the american people's priorities our priorities. they don't like obamacare. i don't like it. it's hurting our economy. the president said i listened to what happened tuesday night. eally?
>> how do you know it is hurting the economy? the economy, though, how do you -- >> well, if you spent as many nights on the road as i have over the last two years, you would hear from employers of every stripe, large, small, medium, every industry and you listen to the employers talking about the concerns they have of what it means for their workforce, what it means for their employees and you see them hesitate in terms of hiring more people, it's pretty clear to me. >> mr. speaker, you have a new crop of conservatives coming into the house who have suggested among other things but women it needed to -- that women need to submit to the authority of their husbands, that hillary clinton is the anti-christ and that the families of sandy hook should get over it. the hell no caucus is getting bigger -- >> no, no, no. >> how do you deal with them differently than you did in the last congress? >> i think the premise of your question i would take exception to. yes, we have some new members who have made some statements,
i'll give you that. but when you look at the vast majority of the new members that are coming in here, they're really solid members. whether it's the youngest woman to ever serve in the congress to another african-american republican from texas, we have done a very good job of recruiting good candidates and we're going to have a very good crop of good members. >> on immigration, for example, you tried to act in the last congress and your conservative members yanked you back. >> no, no, no. >> how can you work with the president on an issue like this? >> no, i would argue with the premise of the question. what held us back last year was a flood of kids coming to the border because of the actions that the president had already taken. and let me tell you what the american people from the right to the left started to look at this issue in a very different way. that's why i made it clear, the president, if he continues to go down this path of taking action on his own is inviting big
trouble. >> that but of kids was -- that flood of kids was the last six months, what about the 18 months before that? >> i could regale you with all of my challenges of trying to get members on both sides of the aisle to deal with this. they were numerous. but hope springs eternal. >> thank you, mr. speaker. harry reid, the republican party has done what it said out to accomplish by firing harry reid. is he no longer an obstacle of getting the agenda of the republicans through this congress? >> you might want to ask mitch mcconnell about that question. listen. >> do you see him as still being someone who has power to thwart. >> of course, you know how the senate works, it requires 60 votes to do almost anything in the senate. and so clearly he is going to have some power. but if you look at the, let's
take the 46 jobs bills that are sitting in the united states senate that have been held up by the democrat majority in the senate, almost all of those passed the house on a bipartisan basis. and i believe that almost all of them enjoy bipartisan support in the united states senate. if you're doing, as you have heard me say this before, i tell my colleagues all the time, if you're doing the right things for the right reasons, you don't have to worry about anything. the right things will happen. next. >> will you compromise on the 0, 40-hour workweek -- >> today on c-span, washington redskins -- "washington journal" is live, next. samantha power will speak about u.s. peacekeeping missions. and analysis of the midterm elections with jonathan cowen
about what it means for the democratic party. and john ferry on the future of the g.o.p. and what republicans in congress will do in the final two years of the obama presidency. morning.d it is friday, november 7, 2014. president obama is scheduled to meet with house and senate leaders of the white house in what could be the first of or the president and the republican-controlled congress working together in the wake of the 2014 election. that optimism has been tempered in recent days as both sides have staked out what they are not willing to give. this morning on "washington review the will meeting and talk about the futures of the democratic and republican par.